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Fields of Specialization and Electives
The requirements for the doctorate are formulated in terms of mastery of these four components. Overall, students must maintain a 3.0 GPA in their graduate course work.
The core areas taken in the first year are Microeconomic Theory, Macroeconomic Theory, and Political economy. All Ph.D. students are expected to be full-time during their first year, registering for 12 credit hours per semester. The full set of graduate courses for the first year of the program is listed below:
Program of Study: 1st Year
|Fall Semester||Spring Semester|
|Microeconomics I (Econ 7005)
Macroeconomics I (Econ 7007)
Political Economy I (Econ 7003)
Quantitative Methods (Econ 7002)
|Microeconomics II (Econ 7006)
Macroeconomics II (Econ 7008)
Political Economy II (Econ 7004)
Econometrics (Econ 7590)
Qualifying exams covering Microeconomics, Macroeconomics and Political Economy are given at the end of the first year of study. They are scheduled during May and June following Spring semester of the first year of study. Students are allowed to retake these exams once. To view samples of past qualifying exam questions click here.
Entering students must be proficient in college algebra, introductory calculus, and statistics. Students must take the Mathematics Exam administered by the Department before beginning classes in Fall semester. Students are not required to pass the exam in order to continue with their coursework. The level of required mathematics is described in the document Mathematics Prerequisite
As an aid, the following sample examination can be used as an indicator of the examination students will be required to take prior to being enrolled in the Fall Semester classes: Sample Mathematics Exam
Students who want to refresh their mathematics knowledge or who wish to improve their performance on the exam should enroll in the Department's optional mathematics tutorial course held during the summer before entering Graduate School. The tutorial and the exam are described below: Math Tutorial Class
Each student must take a course in either Economic History (ECON 7400) or History of Economic Doctrines (ECON 7600 or 7601). This requirement is completed in the studentÕs second or third year. ECON 7400 and ECON 7600/7601 are offered in alternative years.
Students are required to complete two fields of specialization. This requirement adds depth and application to the students economic training. Prior knowledge of a field at an advanced undergraduate level is recommended. Such knowledge may be obtained through course work or directed reading. The Department offers following fields on a regular rotational basis:
|Two-Semester Fields||One-Semester Fields|
Upon completion of field course(s) students are required to demonstrate competence in the field. The latter requires writing a research paper over and above the course requirements in one field of student's choice after the completion of the course. This research paper may serve as the foundation of the student's subsequent dissertation work. In the other field the requirement can be fulfilled through an exam, a paper, or another method as determined by the instructors in the field. If the requirement is a field exam, it may be retaken once in case of failure. The department revisits the fields list periodically and make changes as deemed necessary in response to changes in student and faculty interests and department resources.
Field Courses Offered in 2009-2010 and 2010-2011 Academic Years
|Development I (Econ 7560)
Labor/Gender I (Econ 7150)
Environment (Econ 7251)
|Development II (Econ 7561)
Labor/Gender II (Econ 7170)
Natural Resource (Econ 7250)
History (Econ 7400)
|International I (Econ 7020)
Doctrines I (Econ 7600)
Monetary Theory (Econ 7500)
|International II (Econ 7021)
Doctrines II (Econ 7601)
Health (Econ 7320)
In addition to the listed fields, elective econometrics sequence (Econ 7800 and Econ 7801) is offered every year. Additional elective courses may also be offered in areas including (but not limited to) econometrics, industrial organization, public economics, and Marxian economics subject to student demand, faculty resources, and the discretion of the chair. Including the field and methodology courses, students are required to take 24 credit hours (equivalent to eight courses) following the completion of core courses. Elective courses must be chosen from economics courses at the 7000 level. Exceptions can be made after consultation with the director of the graduate program.
Dissertation research begins during the third year with a yearlong dissertation workshop to aid students in choosing a research topic and ends with a final defense. Throughout the dissertation stage, student research is supervised by a committee of faculty who are expert in the student's area of study. Dissertation students enroll for Dissertation Research, ECON 7970; fourteen credit hours are required. For the Graduate School's policies and procedures for preparing a thesis or dissertation, see A Handbook for Theses and Dissertations.
The following timeline summarizes the department's description of satisfactory progress in the Ph.D. program. These guideposts are set to help students pace their work in the program (and they may be taken into account in the determination of eligibility of funding).